McCormack has been United’s shining light in a gloomy season with the Scot one goal short of 30 approaching the last two games of the campaign.
Twenty-eight of his efforts have come in the league and 70s striking star Jones admits United would be heading back to League One without the 27-year-old’s presence.
Brian McDermott’s side would sit bottom of the Championship table if McCormack’s goals were taken out of the equation and Leeds would even trail second-bottom Yeovil by 11 points. Nine Championship wins would have been draws and former goal-getter Jones knows United should be counting their lucky stars. Allan Clarke’s former strike partner now only hopes the Whites can keep McCormack’s services in the summer.
“If it hadn’t have been for his goals they’d have gone down,” Jones said.
“I know I’m right about that because the only other guy who has knocked one or two in and has not played regularly is big Matt Smith. He’s done well for the appearances he’s made but Ross McCormack has had a tremendous season and we need him desperately.
“Without him I think we’d have been in the third division.”
Crystal Palace are the latest club to have been linked with a move for McCormack but the Scot has already expressed a desire to stay at Elland Road.
McCormack, under contract until the summer of 2016, said at the weekend: “I’ve got a couple of years left on my contract and whether the new owner (Massimo Cellino) wants me to extend that or whatever, that’s up to him. If he puts a contract in front of me to sign, I’ll be part of this new regime and hopefully take the club forward.”